There's something about that 'Once upon a time . . .' feeling. Especially when you're sitting in plush chairs, with the aroma of popcorn floating through the air. There's a buzz of excitement from your fellow watchers as they wait with you for the trailers to finish, the lights to dim and the movie to begin.
We love it, but we're missing something important. Our good friend Story is dying.
Avengers 2, Fast and the Furious 7, Jurassic World (4), Pitch Perfect 2
You see where I'm going, right?
I'm beginning to wonder if these movies are getting made because of their great content or because of the all-mighty buck. My bet's on the all-mighty buck and I think we're being cheated.
Here's my thought about being original, it takes work. Lots of it. Not only does it take work, but it demands an intense and crazy vulnerability. I think that's why movie makers and movie consumers are stuck watching so many sequels.
We know these characters. We know their strengths and weaknesses and it doesn't take any energy to watch them go through their "lives".
Whereas films like Fault in Our Stars or Safety Not Guaranteed demand our attention. We've never met these characters before and we don't know what they're going to do.
It's comfortable to go for the familiar when we want to watch a movie and it makes me wonder how much it parallels our own lives.
I am a creature of habit.
I'll watch my favourite movies over and over again. When I go out to eat I'll order the same thing I always do, when I go out with friends I only suggest things we've already done, like going to the movies or getting Max Brenner Belgian Waffles smothered in chocolate, strawberries and bananas.
There's nothing wrong with this, but where's the risk?
What if we went to the movies and watched a film with subtitles? Or an independent film with a cast we've never heard of and faces we don't recognise?
When it comes to movies, whether they are prequels, sequels or originals go and watch them.
Yes, I did just contradict myself. Here's why . . .
I remember vividly as a kid going to the cinema with my mom. It didn't matter what we watched, but for hours afterward we would sit in the car and discuss the film.
It's still one of my favourite past-times.
It's also taught me how to find the hidden gems of quality in even the most ridiculous film.
Don't just mass consume films, because this is actually the biggest killer of story. Instead search out the quality and speak into that aspect of the film instead of tearing it down.
It's the same with life. The more we mass consume, the more the little things that make life so precious seem mundane and boring. Take time to stop and enjoy.
Refresh your spirit with the good and help keep story alive by learning from it.
Charis Joy Jackson is working as a full-time missionary with Youth With A Mission (YWAM) a non-profit organization in Brisbane. During the day she makes movies and in her spare time is writing a novel. www.charisjoyjackson.com
Charis Jackson's previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/charis-jackson.html